Ohio State University-Mansfield performing ‘Antigone’

“Antigone” is the perfect piece to end Women’s History Month.

It will also be the last production of the year for the Ohio State University-Mansfield annex campus.

Originally produced in 441 BCE, Sophocles’ “Antigone” depicts a woman’s courageous fight for justice. In an act of defiance to honor her deceased brother, Antigone opposes the state.

This piece offers a timeless story about recognizing the dignity due to every person, whether we agree with them or not.

The crisp abridgement and adaptation of the original Greek tragedy, based on a translation by RC Jebb, runs for around 75 minutes with no intermission.

“We wanted to capture the end of Women’s History Month,” said Joe Fahey, associate professor and director of theater at OSU-M. “We take many of the best-known Greek plays and try to find a royalty-free translation.”

He chose Jebb’s translation.

“As I worked with and massaged the tongue, we really enjoyed the musicality of the translation,” Fahey said.

With his family dynamic, he added “Antigone” is a timely choice.

“A lot of it fits with the very tense political climate we have today,” Fahey said. “Everyone thinks they are right.”

Freshman plays the main character

Kathryn Crisp, a freshman graduating from Canfield High School, takes on the title role.

“Antigone is a very powerful woman,” she said. “The odds are against her, but she’s very strong-willed. She fights people no one else is willing to fight.

“Antigone says a lot about the power a woman can have.”

A business graduate, Crisp said she took an acting class and enjoyed it. She has participated in speeches and debates, but this is her first play.

“It’s a little nerve-wracking,” Crisp said. “It’s something new to try. You only live once.”

Steve Russell rehearses for "Antigone" Monday night at Ohio State University-Mansfield.

Dominic Mazullo plays Creon, the evil king. Mazullo, a sophomore in marketing, hasn’t done theater since high school.

“I was trying to meet new people this semester,” he said. “I’ve always had a passion to be on stage.”

Mazullo admits he “knew nothing” about the piece but wanted to get out of his comfort zone by doing something classic.

Chris Campbell, a freshman from North Royalton, plays guard for Creon.

He also had a role in last month’s “The Healing Project.”

“To be fair, I only had three lines in the other game,” Campbell said.

Like Mazullo, he did not know “Antigone” before trying the piece.

“When I got to the auditions, I was just reading lines,” Campbell said, adding that he had done acting in high school.

“Antigone” tells the story of Greek tragedy

He said that “Antigone” offers incentive rates.

“There’s a bit of sadness,” Campbell said. “It’s a bit dark at the end.”

Victoria O’Brien is co-directing with Fahey. She is an academic advisor at Ashland University but worked at OSU-M.

Fahey contacted O’Brien last fall to see if she would be interested in any of the pieces. The former English major jumped at the chance to be part of “Antigone”.

“I read the play in high school and college,” O’Brien said. “You don’t see Greek tragedies every day in Ohio.”

She directed plays in college. This is O’Brien’s first such effort at the grassroots level.

“We normally tell you to sit down and relax, but I want you to sit on the edge of your seats (for ‘Antigone’),” she said. “Don’t be discouraged by tragedy. There’s a lot of beauty in tragedy.”

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Twitter: @MNJCaudill

If you are going to

What: “Antigone”

Or: Founders Auditorium in Ovalwood Hall on the Ohio State University-Mansfield campus.

When: 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Sunday.

Tickets: $8 for general admission, $6 for students and seniors. Tickets are available anytime through ticketmaster.com and onsite within 30 minutes before each show.

More information: To visit mansfield.osu.edu/theatre or call 419-755-4045.

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